68. Zeus: King of the Gods by George O'Connor

Zeus: King of the Gods by George O'Connor (US) - (Canada)
Olympians, Volume 1

Pages: 77 pages
Ages: 10+
Finished: Apr. 20, 2010
First Published: Jan. 5, 2010
Publisher: First Second Books
Genre: graphic novel, Greek mythology
Rating: 5/5

First sentence:

In the time before time, there was nothing, Kaos.

Acquired: Received a review copy from the publisher, First Second Books.

Reason for Reading: I am a huge fan of Greek mythology.

This tells the tale of creation from the Greek mythological point of view up to the birth of Zeus. Then it follows Zeus's story, how he battles his father Kronos to become King of the Gods and the founding of the home for the Olympians on Mount Olympus.

Fantastic first book in a new ongoing series retelling the Greek myths. The story here is very well represented going right back to the beginning with Gaea, The Cyclopes, The Hekatonchieres and the Titans even before the birth of Zeus. This part of Greek mythology is often confusing to children (I never could understand it as a kid) and the graphic representation, especially of the Titans and the Hekatonchieres with their fifty heads and one hundred hands, is the ideal format for telling this myth. This story is also hardly ever included in children's Greek Myth collections and I've read many such collections over the last 16 years to my children. I feel quite confident in saying the author has done a brilliant job of re-telling Zeus' story in an exciting format. The illustrations are dark and unusual as to fit the subject matter from Kronos and the eating of his children to Zeus' final battle with his father. The book ends with the final destinies of those who came before Zeus and looks forward with a frame of Zeus with his Queen, brothers and sisters, and his children preparing us for the next volume. There is also some extra info at the end with an Author's Note, Fact pages on four characters, a Notes section referenced to pages and panels and finally a further reading section both for younger and older readers. I'm very impressed. This is a keeper for me and I'd highly recommend it as a library purchase.


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